While Highway 610 should be done by the end of the year, that's not the case for all of its connections. "We're not quite done. People are mistaken about that a lot," said Maple Grove Mayor Mark Steffenson. Highway 610 almost reaches I–94 and progress is definitely being made. "We are completing some of the connections between 610 and 94, but there are only two connections that are actually being completed right now," said Mayor Steffenson. Those two connections are 610 westbound going north on 94 and southbound on 94 headed east on 610. It will still take $45 million to complete this project by adding other connections to the interchange. "There is no connection going east–west so 610 just stops and there isn't the connection to County Road 30 that needs to happen and there isn't the connection going from 610 south to 94," said Mayor Steffenson. Connecting County Road 30 into the equation will ease up congestion on 94 and as Corcoran Mayor Ken Guenthner points out, make for a smoother commute for residents in rural areas. "So anything that makes their commute shorter is great for them, easier to get to shopping, easier to get to entertainment all of that and not only the current residents but we hope that attracts future residents too," said Mayor Guenthner. It will also help relieve areas within Maple Grove. "Without a good connection to 94 and a good connection to 610 all of that traffic is forced to use the Maple Grove Parkway to get where they want to go," said Director of Public Works Ken Ashfeld. "To have a fully functional 610 will lure more and bigger businesses to our Northwest corridor and it's a very important project to get completed the right way," said Mayor Steffenson. While the completion can't come soon enough, completing other connections, that are yet to be funded, still have a ways to go. "If we're fortunate to put together these pieces of funding together this year being 2016, perhaps it can be completed by the end of the decade," said Ashfeld. "The completion will just improve the economic vibrancy of the whole region," said Guenthner. Emily Raguse, reporting http://twelve.tv http://www.facebook.com/12localnews http://twitter.com/12sports http://twitter.com/12localnews
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